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8 Marketing Metrics That Matter to CMOs


You may spend your days obsessing over click-through rates or website visits, but those probably aren’t the metrics your CMO cares most about.

CMOs need to justify the value of marketing, so they’re looking for stats that show how marketing is helping attract and retain customers, sell products and ultimately increase the value of the brand.

If you want to impress the boss, you’ll need to measure more than individual marketing campaigns. Here are eight marketing metrics that should get your CMO’s attention:

Customer Acquisition Cost Metrics Customer acquisition cost (CAC) measures how much your business spends to bring in a new customer. To find CAC, add your total sales and marketing costs (including marketing and advertising programs, salaries and overhead) and divide by the number of new customers during the period you want to measure.

Want to find out your marketing-specific CAC? Isolate your costs to marketing, then divide by the same number of new customers.

If your customers are making recurring payments or repeat purchases, your CMO may also want to know the time it takes to pay back CAC. To find out, divide the CAC by the margin-adjusted revenue per month for the average new customer. The number will show you how many months it will take to payback the CAC.


Marketing Originated Customers This critical metric identifies how many customers come to your brand through marketing. To identify your percentage of marketing originated customers, divide the number of new customers generated through marketing campaigns by the total number of new customers during a given period. The trick to this stat is having a system to determine which customers were acquired directly through marketing campaigns rather than sales.


Marketing Influenced Customers The percentage of marketing influenced customers illustrates the reach of your brand’s marketing efforts. This metric represents all customers who were exposed to a marketing campaign or message, regardless of whether they were acquired through sales or marketing channels – so divide the number of new customers exposed to a marketing campaign by the total number of new customers. The percentage of marketing influenced customers should be larger than your brand’s percentage of marketing originated customers.

Customer Satisfaction Customer satisfaction metrics are less straightforward to calculate than CAC or marketing originated/influenced customers, but satisfaction may be more important to CMOs. According to the Salesforce 2015 State of Marketing Report, marketers are shifting away from traditional metrics like conversion rates and focusing on metrics that represent customer satisfaction. Brands may survey customers or track referrals or repeat business to gauge customer satisfaction.


Customer Retention Marketers surveyed by Salesforce this year identified customer retention as one of the top-five digital-marketing metrics for success. After identifying the cost of acquiring a customer, it’s also worth measuring how much your brand spends to retain customers, especially for businesses that use a subscription model.

To calculate retention rates, subtract new customers from total customers at the end of a period, then divide by customers at the start of the period. Your customer retention rate can indicate whether your brand should focus more on marketing to retain existing customers vs. attracting new ones.

Return on Investment The return on investment (ROI) of your marketing efforts may ultimately be the metric your CMO cares about most. This number represents the value marketing brings to your brand. Basically, ROI is calculated by subtracting your investment in marketing from your profits, then dividing by your investment.


The complicated part is determining how to identify your marketing investment and profits from those investments. Marketing calculators and tools can help you find your ROI. For more information about calculating ROI, check out the WebDAM guide on how to measure digital asset management ROI.

When it comes to metrics that matter to your CMO, search for stats that show a bigger picture of how your marketing is contributing to your brand’s overall value by attracting new customers, improving brand sentiment among existing customers and ultimately bringing in revenue. The metrics we’ve mentioned aren’t the only ones that demonstrate the value of marketing – let us know which ones you’re measuring in the comments or tweet @WebDAM.

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